In the social counseling you will find answers to questions about social security, child care, insurance matters, unemployment benefit II, social benefits, studies with disabilities and/or chronic diseases. In addition, you can get addresses of other counseling centers and contact persons of other offices and authorities.
The office hours are Monday and Tuesday from 9:00-12:00 and Thursday from 13:30-16:00. The contact details of Barbara Toth can be found in the info box on the right.
As a rule, this is not possible, since students whose education is eligible for funding on the merits - and these are all regular courses of study - are not entitled to benefits to secure their livelihood. It does not matter whether BAföG is actually received or not. Students who do not receive BAföG (anymore) because they have exceeded the eligibility period or for other reasons are therefore still not entitled to benefits according to SGB II or SGB XII.
However, in cases of particular hardship, benefits can be provided to ensure subsistence (according to SGB II as a loan, according to SGB XII as a non-repayable grant or loan), especially if, for example
- -studies are suspended due to the birth and associated care of a child;
- the studies take longer than they can be supported by BAföG due to illness, pregnancy or disability and the successful completion would be endangered due to lack of funds;
- it will not be possible for a student with a severe disability to secure his/her livelihood sufficiently through gainful employment in the long term or possibly permanently if he/she discontinues his/her studies;
- a student without means is in the current phase of the final examination and therefore cannot reasonably be expected to discontinue his/her studies.
Please note: Students on leave of absence are not entitled to BAföG. If the requirements are met, they can apply for a citizen's allowance (Bürgergeld) for themselves (and, if applicable, for their children). Alternatively, financing during the semester of leave can also be financed through housing allowance (and, if applicable, the child supplement).
Please note, however, that there must be a valid reason for a leave of absence (e.g. illness, pregnancy or care/taking care of family members). Appropriate proof must be submitted to the Student Secretariat.
The new housing benefit reform came into force on January 1, 2023, which means that more people are entitled to housing benefit. Housing benefit is a state subsidy for rent that does not have to be repaid. The prerequisite is that one can cover the costs of living oneself and that only a part for the rent is missing. When applying for a housing allowance, it is therefore necessary to prove that you have regular income of at least slightly more than the requirement for basic security according to SGB II (currently this is 502 euros plus costs for health/nursing care insurance plus a share of the monthly rent). Conversely, of course, you must not have too much of your own income or assets.
Students can apply for housing allowance if they are not entitled to Bafög. This is the case, for example, if
- the maximum period of support has been exceeded and the prerequisites for further support or graduation support according to BAföG are not met;
- the time frame for graduation support has been exceeded;
- the age limit for educational support has been exceeded.
Student parents with a common child are not themselves eligible for housing subsidies, since they are entitled to BAföG on the merits. Nevertheless, the entire family household is entitled to housing allowance, since the child is not studying and therefore cannot apply for BAföG.
Attention: housing allowance is a social benefit. Foreign students with a residence permit according to §16b AufenthG may endanger their residence by applying for housing allowance! Please seek advice in advance or consult with the Foreigners' Registration Office.
You can find more information on the topic with a "housing allowance calculator" on the website Wohngeldrechner des BMWSB.
In Freiburg one can apply for housing assistance benefits at the Office of Housing (Amt für Wohnungswesen) located at the Fahnenbergplatz. Students who do not reside in Freiburg should contact their relevant administrative district offices Breisgau-Hochschwarzwald (Freiburg, Stadtstraße 2 or Titisee-Neustadt, Goethestraße 7) or Emendingen (Emmendingen, Bahnhofstraße 2-4).
When applying for housing assistance benefits, one should submit the BAföG letter of refusal as well as proof of income and the completed application form.
All information for the SemesterTicket:
All students, both Germans and students from abroad, must have a health insurance in Germany in order to be admitted to study. During your studies, there are different ways to have (statutory) health insurance:
- through family insurance,
- via a special student health insurance or
- voluntary health insurance for students.
Especially for foreign students, we recommend a statutory health insurance, because there students up to the age of 30 get a favorable student tariff. In the case of private insurance, the insurance conditions and exclusions must be carefully checked!
Students are generally subject to health insurance. Students who are covered by private health insurance and wish to be exempted from student health insurance must submit a confirmation of their private health insurance to a statutory health insurance fund and apply for "Exemption from compulsory student insurance". Attention: This exemption is valid for the entire period of study. The exemption notice must be presented with the documents for enrolment.
During your studies, there are different ways to be covered by health insurance: either by family insurance, by special student health insurance or by voluntary health insurance for students.
Students are not subject to health and nursing insurance if they have family insurance. Normally, students can take out family insurance free of charge up to the age of 25 (normally up to the age of 27 in the case of privately insured persons), i.e. they do not have to pay their own insurance contributions. However, this only applies if their total monthly income does not exceed € 470. An extension of the statutory family insurance is possible for up to one year, e.g. due to military service or voluntary service.
Students who are no longer covered by family insurance are required to take out student health and long-term care insurance. This exists until the end of the 14th semester, at the latest until the end of the semester in which the student reaches the age of 30. Beyond this point in time, the insurance obligation may continue to exist if the type of education, family reasons or personal reasons (e.g. second chance of education, longer illness or birth as well as care of a child) justify exceeding the age limit or a longer period of study. The statutory health insurance funds offer a special student rate:
Since 01.10.2019, the monthly contributions to the statutory health and nursing insurance for students under 23 years of age have been 98.73 €. Students who are over 23 years old and have no child have to pay 100,59 €. Many health insurance funds also charge an additional fee, which varies from fund to fund.
All students must be insured against illness in Germany. We recommend that you register with a statutory health insurance company. They grant a favourable student rate up to the completion of the 30 year. If you meet these requirements, the statutory health insurance company is obliged to insure you at the student price. Except for a small amount, this health insurance covers the costs for medical treatment and prescription drugs. Attention: Costs for dental prostheses are usually not completely covered by the health insurance!
Students from EU countries who have a "European Health Insurance Card" (EHIC) must present their card to a statutory health insurance company (AOK, Techniker Krankenkasse, etc.). You will then receive a certificate stating that you are exempt from compulsory insurance.
Attention: if you are insured via the EHIC and take up a job in Germany, you usually have to take out health insurance in Germany! Please clarify this with your health insurance company.
If statutory insurance is not possible, insure yourself in a private insurance. Here you can get more information:
Deutsches Studentenwerk - Information for international Students: Health Insurance.
If you have any questions about health insurance, the Social Counseling Service of the Studierendenwerk can certainly help you.
As a matter of principle, Students are subject to take out health insurance. Students and university applicants who have taken out private health insurance and wish to be exempted from the statutory student health insurance must submit a confirmation of their private health insurance to a statutory health insurance company and apply for "exemption from the compulsory insurance of students". Attention: This exemption is valid for the entire duration of studies. The exemption form must be presented when enrolling at the university.
During your studies, there are different health insurance options: either through family insurance, through a special student health insurance or through a voluntary health insurance for students.
Students who are insured through their family’s health insurance are not required to take out personal health and nursing insurances. Normally, students can take out family insurance until they reach the age of 25 (usually up to the age of 27 in the case of privately insured persons), i.e. they do not have to pay their own insurance dues. If the studies are interrupted or delayed because of military or community service, there is the possibility for an extension of family insurance coverage for the time period corresponding to the service. One condition for being insured through family insurance is that your monthly income from not self-employed work does not exceed 450 euros. Your income from self-employed work, rent and earned interest must not exceed 470 euros.
Students who are no longer covered by family insurance must take out their own student health and nursing care insurances. This offer is valid at the latest until the end of the semester in which the student reaches the age of 30. Beyond this point in time certain conditions, such as the type of training, family reasons or personal reasons, may justify an extension of the age limit or an extension of the maximum duration of studies. The statutory and private health insurance funds offer special student rates.